Thanks to a coordinated effort among area law enforcement, an attempted abduction of two children was halted Monday.
The McCook Police Department received a call about 1:45 p.m. from a staff member at a local church concerning a woman asking for money, according to McCook Police Chief Ike Brown. The woman, described as a heavy-set blond in her mid-30s driving a blue Trailblazer with no plates, was told that Salvation Army travel and lodging vouchers were available from the McCook Police Department. But the woman, later identified as Katrina Seay, 25, of Lead, S.D., allegedly said that she didn't want the police involved as what she was doing would make "national news in a few days."
Two children were also noticed in the vehicle but the woman refused to bring them in, the police report said.
After she left, the church staff member contacted the McCook Police Department about the woman's suspicious behavior and dispatchers notified area law enforcement, including Red Willow County Sheriff's office, the Nebraska State Patrol and other agencies in northwest Kansas.
According to Oberlin Police Chief Wade Lockhart, at about 4:16 p.m., law enforcement in Oberlin, Kan.. conducted a traffic stop on a woman driving a blue Trailbazer with two small children inside.
She refused to tell the officer where she was going but did say she was running from a domestic situation from the children's father.
After investigation, Oberlin police found that the children, two boys aged 21⁄2 and 14 months, were taken from Lead, S.D., where they had been in custody of the state. The children were placed in temporary foster care in Decatur County until they could be returned to South Dakota, Lockhart said.
McCook Police Chief Ike Brown commended the McCook Police Department dispatchers for their part in coordinating law enforcement agencies.
"Getting the information and giving it to all agencies quickly and accurately is something we do every day, but the dispatchers really shone this time," he said. "Most importantly, the children were located safely."